Over 700 people gathered this week at Sydney Town Hall to support Ukraine at the Ukraine Crisis Appeal Benefit.
The event was held to raise funds for the ongoing humanitarian and refugee crisis taking place in Ukraine, where the civilian death toll is climbing by the day since the Russian invasion over a month ago. As of the 29th of March, the UNHCR has reported 3,039 civilian casualties in Ukraine, including 1,179 killed and 1,860 injured.
The Benefit, featuring cultural and musical programs in addition to talks from speakers, such as Mr Vasyl Myroshnychenko – Ukrainian Ambassador-Designate to Australia and Clover Moore, Sydney lord mayor, was hosted by Andrew Denton and live-streamed on the Ukrainian Council of NSW’s YouTube page.
NSW Minister for Multiculturalism Mark Coure (pictured, left) attended the Benefit. Photo: Mark Coure MP.
Minister for Multiculturalism Mark Coure also spoke about solidarity, the importance of supporting civilians in conflict, and NSW’s stance on supporting unity, human dignity and peace.
Performers on the agenda included Larysa Kovalchuk and the Zahrava Ukrainian Youth Association Dance Ensemble, which is one of Sydney’s earliest Ukrainian dance groups.
All proceeds raised by tickets sold were donated to the Ukraine Crisis Appeal to help refugees and victims of the invasion.
Ukraine crisis the largest refugee emergency since World War II
During March, members of the Ukrainian community in Sydney have set up a donation drive at The Intercession of The Holy Virgin Ukrainian Orthodox Church in Strathfield, with donations including clothing, toys, shoes, games, baby diapers, books, feminine hygiene products and toiletries. It was set up for displaced peoples and families from Ukraine to pick up essential necessities as needed, and will continue biweekly on Tuesdays and Sundays throughout the humanitarian crisis.
The invasion has instigated Europe’s largest refugee crisis since World War II, leaving millions of Ukrainians displaced throughout the country, in addition to over 3.9 million refugees fleeing the country in less than a month.